The line between headphones and hearing aids is about to get way blurrier

Apple AirPods Pro
Photo by Chris Welch / The Verge

Hearing aids will soon be able to be sold over the counter and without a prescription, the Biden administration announced Tuesday. A new final rule from the Food and Drug Administration created a new category for over-the-counter hearing aids — which wouldn’t need an exam or an expensive fitting. The devices could be in stores as soon as mid-October.

The rule could be a relief for the tens of millions of people in the United States with some level of hearing loss. The new landscape could also offer headphone makers and other tech companies an easier way to start selling headphone-like devices that function as hearing aids — a market that many big companies have been eyeing for years.

Over-the-counter hearing aids have been in the works…

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Author: Nicole Wetsman